Sear Chuck Hughes' martini pork chops with butter, shallots

The Cooking Channel’s Chuck Hughes sears martini pork chops, followed up with dessert: lemon pound cake with pistachio cream and strawberries.

Martini pork chops

Makes 8 servings


    • 8 pork chops (1-1 1/2 inches)
    • Coarse salt and freshly cracked black pepper
    • 3 tablespoons butter
    • 1 tablespoon olive oil
    • 2 large shallots, sliced lengthwise
    • 1/2-3/4 cup dry vermouth


Baking Directions:

Season the pork chops with salt and pepper.In a large skillet over high heat, melt 1 tablespoon of the butter in the oil. Add the pork chops and sear them for about 3 minutes on each side. Reduce heat to medium and continue cooking until the chops are cooked through but still moist, about 6 more minutes, depending on the thickness of your chops.Transfer the chops to a platter and cover with foil to keep warm. Pour off excess fat from the pan, return pan to heat, and add the shallots; cook, stirring a few minutes until they soften. Add the vermouth, stirring to scrape up all the browned bits. Simmer the sauce for a minute or two until reduced slightly. Stir in a generous nub of butter. Drizzle over the pork chops.

Lemon pound cake with pistachio cream and strawberries

Makes 8-10 servings


  • Lemon pound cake

    • 4 large eggs, separated
    • 1 cup sugar
    • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
    • Zest and juice of 1 lemon, plus additional zest for garnish
    • 1 cup butter, melted and cooled to room temperature
    • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • Pistachio cream

    • 1 cup crème fraiche
    • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
    • 1/4 cup pistachios, toasted and coarsely chopped
  • Strawberries

    • 3 cups strawberries, halved
    • 1/4 cup sugar
    • Seeds scraped from 1 vanilla bean


Baking Directions:

For the pound cake:Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Butter an 8x4-inch loaf pan and line with parchment paper.In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat the egg whites until firm peaks form. Set aside.In another large bowl, beat the egg yolks with the sugar, vanilla, and lemon zest until pale and creamy. Beat in the melted butter, then the lemon juice. Add the flour and stir until just combined. Gently but thoroughly fold in the egg whites.Pour the batter into the loaf pan. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely in the pan.For the pistachio cream: In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat the crème fraiche with the brown sugar until thick. Stir in the pistachios. Refrigerate until ready to serve.For the strawberries: In a bowl, combine the strawberries, sugar and vanilla seeds. Stir well. Let sit for about 30 minutes to allow the sugar to dissolve.To serve, top slices of the pound cake with strawberries and then the pistachio cream. Garnish with lemon zest.


For a different twist, butter the slices of cake, sprinkle with a mix of cinnamon and sugar, and grill them before topping with the strawberries and pistachio cream.